Category: News
Date published: January 18, 2016

New parasitic wasp mix detects first signs of aphid infestation

The new parasitic wasp mix Aphiscout detects the early signs of an aphid infestation and gives growers reliable information about the correct release strategy.

Koppert Biological Systems will be launching Aphiscout at IPM Essen with the campaign ‘Looking for trouble!’. ‘Parasitic wasps are geared to detect and parasitize long before they are visible to the human eye,' explains product manager Tim Bossinga.

Aphiscout is a mix of the parasitic wasps Praon volucre, Aphidius colemani, Aphidius ervi, Aphelinus abdominalis, and Ephedrus cerasicola. Each species has its own preferences and together they deal with the most commonly occurring types of aphid. This makes Aphiscout the ideal form of basic protection against aphids. The parasitized aphids also provide information on which parasitic wasp can best be released for a large-scale offensive. 'It's like sending out scouts for a reconnaissance mission first,' says Bossinga.

Unique packaging
Aphiscout is supplied in a cylinder containing 250 mummies.. Thanks to the felt NectarPad containing sugar water inside the container, the parasitic wasps can go into battle full of energy. The packaging features a simple hanging system, whereby the sticky outer layer of the label can be used to fix the container around a wire or a plant stem, for example.

Valuable solution
Product manager Tim Bossinga expects this new product to prove a valuable solution for soft fruit growers at the start of the aphid season. 'Rule one of crop protection is: scouting, scouting, scouting. However, aphid populations develop so quickly that by the time you detect them it is often too late to gain control over the infestation by biological means. With Aphiscout in the vanguard, you stay one step ahead of the problem.'